Key Passage: Matthew 28:19-20 “Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations…And remember, I am with you always.”
Big Picture Question: What job did Jesus give His friends? Jesus said to tell everyone about Him.
Christ Connection: Jesus told His friends that everyone they went they were to make more followers of Him. Jesus’ friends could do this because Jesus is in charge of everything, and He promised He would be with them. When we follow Jesus, He promises to always be with us too. Jesus’ mission to His friends is our mission too. We are to make more followers of Jesus.
After Jesus’ death and resurrection, He appeared to His disciples over a 40 day period. At one point, He appeared to over 500 disciples. Then He appeared to James, His half-brother, and the rest of the apostles. (1 Cor. 15:5-7) During that time, Jesus taught them about the kingdom of God. (Acts 1:3) Some disciples wondered if Jesus was going to restore the kingdom of Israel. (Acts 1:6)
Jesus and the Father had a different plan for the disciples. Jesus directed the Eleven to go to a mountain, where He appeared to them again. When Jesus appeared, they worshiped Him, but some still doubted. (Matt. 28:17) Before we condemn the disciples who doubted, they had not yet received the Holy Spirit. (Luke 24:49) Without the Holy Spirit, the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing. (1 Cor. 1:18)
On the mountain, Jesus gave His disciples the Great Commission. First, Jesus stated that all authority had been given to Him. Before the resurrection, Jesus had authority as God the Son. Through the resurrection, however, the Father gave Jesus far more than even Satan had promised. (Matt. 4:8-9) Through Jesus’ death and resurrection, God subjected everything to His beloved Son. (See Heb. 2:5-9.)
Jesus commanded His disciples to go into the world and preach the gospel, the good news about Him. The Great Commission is not just for missionaries far from home. All believers are called to share the gospel with others, to teach them to obey God’s commands, and to baptize them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Jesus finishes His commission with a profound promise: “And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matt. 28:20).
Talk to the kids you teach about the importance of living out the Great Commission. The good news about what Jesus has done to rescue us from our sins is too great to keep to ourselves. Before Jesus went back to heaven, He gave the disciples a job to do. Jesus wants His followers to teach people everywhere about Jesus so they will trust in Him as their Lord and Savior.
Family Activity: Make a list as a family of all the things you like to talk about with family or friends. Beside that list, make a list of the people you see often that you talk with or could talk with. Remind kids that Jesus asked His disciples to tell others about Him and help them become followers of Jesus. Read Matthew 28:16-20. Discuss how you might talk about Jesus with the people on your list.